Bellingham archaeologist joins hunt for U.S. soldiers' remains on Pacific atoll

Monday, January 13, 2014 - 11:01am
The Bellingham Herald

Garth Baldwin recently spent three weeks on a small island in the turquoise waters of the Pacific Ocean, but it was no vacation in paradise.

An archaeologist based in Bellingham, he was sifting coral sand for the remains of U.S. Marines and sailors killed during a bloody World War II battle on Tarawa atoll.

The work left Baldwin drenched in sweat, his hands gritty and calloused. The tropical beaches nearby are littered with trash and fouled by latrines.

"It's uncomfortable and challenging," he said.